February 2024
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TD Magazine

Commit to Future Leaders

Thursday, February 1, 2024

Boosting general leadership competencies bolsters organizational preparedness.

We work and live in a VUCA world—one filled with volatility, uncertainty, complexity, and ambiguity. The future is an unknown, and organizations need senior leaders equipped with strong communication, adaptability, resiliency, and problem-solving skills. With that in mind, talent development functions should incorporate those traits into their offerings, including as part of their succession planning.


In "Succession Planning for Today's Work World," Annette Cremo and Tom Bux advise TD practitioners to ground succession planning efforts in their organization's values and vision. Succession only becomes a proper focus when companies incorporate it as part of the overall strategic plan.

To begin, leaders must commit to a succession planning process that includes defining key positions, determining skills and competencies, and identifying cracks in their companies, say Cremo and Bux.

Pull job descriptions to find the main job components of key positions, and pinpoint standards for exemplary performance. Remember to validate findings to ensure that those components and attributes still meet the business's strategic goals.


Research where the organization has great depth; where it lacks depth; and what roles, if suddenly vacant, would cause great stress and hardship for the business.

Identify potential candidates who can assume key roles. In what areas do they need to grow or develop? How will the TD function accomplish that?

These tips were adapted from the February 2024 issue of TD at Work. Learn more at td.org/TDatWork.

About the Author

The Association for Talent Development (ATD) is a professional membership organization supporting those who develop the knowledge and skills of employees in organizations around the world. The ATD Staff, along with a worldwide network of volunteers work to empower professionals to develop talent in the workplace.

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